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Who's Better -- Aldean or Gilbert? And, something cool from Western Flyer

Mike Sudhalter  |  June 29, 2011

Jason Aldean has had a couple of big hits with Brantley Gilbert-penned songs

So, newcomer Brantley Gilbert is coming up with the songs, and established star Jason Aldean is popularizing them.

Aside from the hard-core country music fans, few have heard of Gilbert. Aldean is nearly a household name, thanks to collaborations with Kelly Clarkson, and more recently, Ludacris at the CMT Music Awards.

Aldean has made a big hit with "My Kinda Party" and "Dirt Road Anthem," the latter of which Gilbert wrote with Colt Ford

So, it's a question of do you like the original version by the unknown version or the one that you hear 20 times a day on the radio? E-mail me and let me know?

Quite often, the general public doesn't know the names of songwriters, but this is a different situation because Gilbert is an artist who's not on a major label that's trying to break through.

Would his versions of the same songs had the same success? Not as likely.

Hopefully, Aldean will recognize the contributions that Gilbert has made to his success, if he hasn't already, and helped boost the newcomer's career.

Last week, I was driving home and listening to a Western Flyer album that I bought for $2.99 at Ernest Tubb's Record Shop on Lower Broadway on the last day of CMA Festival.

The album was mostly pedestrian, and I didn't like their version of "She Wants To Be Wanted" as much as Ty Herndon's recording of the song, on his sophomore album.

But the final cut on the album stopped me on my tracks. It was one of the most creative things I've seen in country music, and I hope a current artist duplicates it.

They covered the Tennessee Ernie Ford classic, "Sixteen Tons."

But after performing the song in its traditional form, they recorded it in hip-hop, bluegrass, rock and soul forms. All with light-hearted banter between the band in between the versions.

You could tell the Western Flyer guys were having fun, and it was really cool for the listener - because how often do you hear something like that?

I hope someone recognizes this as their contribution to country music, because otherwise they'll remain forgotten amidst the proverbial Bargain Bin of Country Music History.

:: Posted at 12:05 AM by Mike Sudhalter ::
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